Blessing Bature-Akpakpan, Abuja
In his efforts to ensure the continuous safety, well-being and welfare of all displaced persons, and the reduction, if not complete eradication of the menace of internal displacement in Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the new National Policy for Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs).
In a statement signed by the Special Adviser, Media and Strategic Communication, Refugees Commission, Sadiq Abdullateef said the increasing incidence of forced displacement resulting from ethnic, religious, economic and boundary conflicts, natural and man-made disasters, and its attendant massive destruction to lives and property have compelled this administration to embark on a quest for a durable and sustainable solution, and the approval of the IDP policy is one of such advancement.
“The National Policy on Internal Displacements provides a platform for all relevant actors in the humanitarian and development space to key in and contribute towards a common goal. The overall goal of the policy is to strengthen the institutional mechanism and frameworks for the realization of the rights, dignity and wellbeing of the vulnerable populations through the mitigation of impact and achievement of durable solutions.
“The Honourable Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management, and Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouq presented a memo for the approval of a draft of the policy at the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting last Wednesday, which was duly approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.
“Like the Honourable Minister rightly pointed out during the presentation, the policy is a milestone in this government’s determination to bring succour to displaced persons as a multi-sectorial structure will fully emerge, which will ensure a coordinated, operational and strategic response to all the humanitarian challenges in the country.
“The Honourable Federal Commissioner, National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons (NCFRMI), Hajiya Imaan Sulaiman-Ibrahim, the board, staff and management of the Commission and most importantly, the millions of displaced persons across the country, we wish to thank President Buhari for making this bold dream of ours a reality and Farouq for her efforts, resilience and stewardship in ensuring that this policy meets international standards and best practices in protection and assistance of internally displaced persons”.
“We are also grateful for the support and contributions made by the European Union, ECOWAS Commission, African Union Commission, Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of the Swiss Confederation, the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC) of the Norwegian Refugee Commission, the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR), Office of the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), and International Organisation for Migration (IOM), among others.
She assured that the Refugee Commission will implement the provisions of this policy faithfully and diligently.